Ancient Typography from Damascus

After some excavations, I’ve found these beautiful typographical designs of the Safwat-el-Molk mausoleum’s dome, the mausoleum was removed and replaced by the Havana cafe building. It was built between 1110 and 1111 AD for the wife of the Seljuk ruler of Damascus.

Please enjoy looking at these superb and rare Damascene Seljuk Kufic samples.

Info and illustrations from: Ecochard, M. and Sauvaget, J. “Le Tombeau de Safwat al-Molk.” In Les Monuments Ayyoubides de Damas, 1-13. Paris: Editions Boccard, 1938.

 

 

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The dome before demolishing.

 

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بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم إن الله وملائكته

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الذين آمنوا صلوا عليه وسلمو تسليما صدق الله العـ

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الحمدلله على أفضاله —- على محمد وآله

 

 

 

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Subhi Bilani

Subhi Bilani, a classical calligrapher from Syria, he was a famous artist and teacher in the 30’s and 40’s of the past century, I liked these pieces because he used an organic way to write Ruqaa, I’m pretty sure that he was so fast to write them.. you can see the unclear letter endings, and sometimes the minimal shapes for some other letters.

What I also liked is the strong angular baseline across the words.

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